Secure

Lay long talking with my wife about Balty, whom I do wish very well to, and would be glad to advise him, for he is very sober and willing to take all pains. Up and to Sir W. Batten, who I find has had some words with Sir W. Pen about the employing of a cooper about our prize wines, W. Batten standing and indeed imposing upon us Mr. Morrice, which I like not, nor do W. Pen, and I confess the very thoughts of what our goods will come to when we have them do discourage me in going any further in the adventure. Then to the office till noon, doing business, and then to the Exchange, and thence to the Sun Taverne and dined with W. Batten, R. Ford, and the Swede’s Agent to discourse of a composition about our prizes that are condemned, but did do little, he standing upon high terms and we doing the like. I home, and there find Balty and his wife got thither both by my wife for me to give them good advice, for her to be with his father and mother all this time of absence, for saving of money, and did plainly and like a friend tell them my mind of the necessity of saving money, and that if I did not find they did endeavour it, I should not think fit to trouble myself for them, but I see she is utterly against being with his father and mother, and he is fond of her, and I perceive the differences between the old people and them are too great to be presently forgot, and so he do propose that it will be cheaper for him to put her to board at a place he is offered at Lee, and I, seeing that I am not like to be troubled with the finding a place, and having given him so much good advice, do leave them to stand and fall as they please, having discharged myself as a friend, and not likely to be accountable for her nor be troubled with her, if he should miscarry I mean, as to her lodging, and so broke up. Then he and I to make a visit to W. Pen, who hath thought fit to show kindness to Balty in this business, indeed though he be a false rogue, but it was he knew a thing easy to do. Thence together to my shoemaker’s, cutler’s, tailor’s, and up and down about my mourning, and in my way do observe the great streets in the city are marked out with piles drove into the ground; and if ever it be built in that form with so fair streets, it will be a noble sight. So to the Council chamber, but staid not there, but to a periwigg-maker’s of his acquaintance, and there bought two periwiggs, mighty fine; indeed, too fine, I thought, for me; but he persuaded me, and I did buy them for 4l. 10s. the two. Then to the Exchange and bought gloves, and so to the Bull-Head Taverne, whither he brought my French gun; and one Truelocke, the famous gunsmith, that is a mighty ingenious man, and he did take my gun in pieces, and made me understand the secrets thereof and upon the whole I do find it a very good piece of work, and truly wrought; but for certain not a thing to be used much with safety: and he do find that this very gun was never yet shot off: I was mighty satisfied with it and him, and the sight of so much curiosity of this kind. Here he brought also a haberdasher at my desire, and I bought a hat of him, and so away and called away my wife from his house, and so home and to read, and then to supper and to bed, my head full in behalf of Balty, who tells me strange stories of his mother. Among others, how she, in his absence in Ireland, did pawne all the things that he had got in his service under Oliver, and run of her own accord, without her husband’s leave, into Flanders, and that his purse, and 4s. a week which his father receives of the French church, is all the subsistence his father and mother have, and that about 20l. a year maintains them; which, if it please God, I will find one way or other to provide for them, to remove that scandal away.

o to be sober
and stand up

in this time
of plain necessity

like my own true gun
my good piece of safety

this gun never yet
shot off


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Friday 29 March 1667.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.